Dylan Jones, editor of GQ magazine, has mocked Jeremy Corbyn during a BBC Radio 4 interview, calling him “underwhelming” and describing his magazine photo shoot as “tortuous”.
An exclusive interview with the Labour leader appears in the latest issue of the magazine, with Corbyn appearing on the cover looking dapper in a suit, which the left-leaning politician insisted should be from M&S, according to Jones.
Despite presenting a slick and media-savvy on the cover, Jones told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that the reality was quite different.
“When he turned up for his shoot it was almost like he was being pushed around like the grandpa for the family Christmas photograph,” said Jones during the interview. “He wasn’t particularly aware of what was going on.”
Jones, who has previously written about his support for the Tories and also written a book with David Cameron described Corbyn’s photo shoot as being “as difficult as shooting any hollywood celebrity”.
He said that Corbyn’s team didn’t appear to understand the process saying that they “weren’t aware that he couldn’t just turn up in his anorak”.
The long-standing editor also revealed that Corbyn refused to be interviewed by Alastair Camppell who takes care of most of the magazine’s big political interviews. Instead, Corbyn was quizzed by senior commissioning editor and PPA (Professional Publishers Association) consumer writer of the year Stuart McGurk.
The magazine has previously featured David Cameron, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and London Mayor Sadiq Khan on its cover, and was the first to put the former PM on its cover when he first came to power.
According to Jones, McGurk, was initially a fan of Corbyn’s but ended up being thoroughly disappointed with the encounter. The Labour leader was reportedly “not fantastic on detail”, being unable to remember the names of any of his own business advisors, and couldn’t name a single film he’d seen or any book he’d read this year.
What’s more, Jones claimed that even the younger members of the team were left disappointed by their time with Corbyn, who received a great deal of praise for winning over young voters in 2017.
“We sent a lot of younger members of the group that perhaps subscribe to the idea that he can turn water into wine,” said Jones, adding, “and they came back saying that they wished they hadn’t met him as they found him to be quite underwhelming”.
The new issue of GQ featuring Corbyn on the cover hits the shops on Monday.